GROUNDHOGS AND THE SEASONS OF PARENTING

I am from a small island in the Caribbean called Puerto Rico. Over there we don’t have seasons. Well, we have two, hot and hotter. You can literally be going to beach on Christmas day and build yourself a sand/snowman. So, when I moved to the States, I discovered the beauty behind the seasons! The first time I saw snow was when I was 25 years old and you better believe that I did spent most of my time on the floor making snow angels out of pure excitement! Experiencing the change of colors in Fall was just the most beautiful thing I had ever seen! The fact that nature knows to follow the seasons and they carry the message of it for us to witness, just blows my mind.

Seasons are just needed. Our animal friends that hibernate know it well. They need that winter time to rest and prepare for the rest of the year to do it all over again, and they do it because that is what they were created to do. Just like the Groundhogs! That was also something completely new for me, I had no idea that there was an American Holiday called “Groundhog Day” until I moved here! I sure feel the excitement of the farmers to know If spring will be here early or not. As an island girl, I need my sunshine! However, as I was thinking about this, a question came to my mind, what is it about seasons that we just stay in it for a little, get tired, weary and ready to move to the next? And then when we arrive at the desired season, we long for the past one. My next thought was, “As a parent sometimes I feel like that farmer, I want someone to tell me if the season I am in is about to end, or are we there yet?” You see, if you are like me, there are days that are so hard as parents, that I wish we were in the retirement season already. But the thing about seasons is that in order to enjoy the next one you got to ground yourself and trust the process of the present one.

Every season has its beauty and its hard. Trees transitioning from summer to fall know it well. They literally die, lose their color, and leaves to preserve themselves during the winter time. Parenting is exactly the same, some days when the laundry is just impossible to fold (shout out to Marie Kondo), when there seems to be a demand from every single member of our family, or when we simply are too tired to show up, those days are the ones we need to remind ourselves that the season we are in will produce the best fruit.  And friend, is all about perspective. Talking to a mom of four, who is currently an empty nester with her husband, helped me realized the idea that “The days are long, but the years are short” It is so true , before we know it, we will be out of this season of being moms and dads of little kids and we will reminisce about the “good all days” But being completely honest if we intentionally choose to bring out the joy in the season we are in we would not have the need of wishing for the “good old days” because we will be fully immerse in the present season and that is enough.

So, losing our color, our leaves, and feeling vulnerable is all temporary, but it is all needed to become what God has thought for us as mom, dads, teachers and caregivers. If like nature we learn to harmonize with the rhythm of every season instead of resisting it, we will be able to see the beauty without yearning to be in the next. I don’t want to just “get through a season” I want to enjoy it knowing that this winter won’t be like the next and that if I am too concerned with how the next season is going to be, I may miss this one completely.

Here is a beautiful song by Hillsong that I hope encourages you today!

Like the frost on a rose
Winter comes for us all
Oh how nature acquaints us
With the nature of patience
Like a seed in the snow
I’ve been buried to grow
For Your promise is loyal
From seed to sequoia

I know
Though the winter is long even richer
The harvest it brings
Though my waiting prolongs even greater
Your promise for me like a seed
I believe that my season will come

Lord I think of Your love
Like the low winter sun
And as I gaze I am blinded
In the light of Your brightness
And like a fire to the snow
I’m renewed in Your warmth
Melt the ice of this wild soul
Till the barren is beautiful

And I know
Though the winter is long even richer
The harvest it brings
Though my waiting prolongs even greater
Your promise for me like a seed
I believe that my season will come

I can see the promise
I can see the future
You’re the God of seasons
And I’m just in the winter
If all I know of harvest
Is that it’s worth my patience
Then if You’re not done working
God I’m not done waiting
You can see my promise
Even in the winter
Cause You’re the God of greatness
Even in a manger
For all I know of seasons
Is that You take Your time
You could have saved us in a second
Instead You sent a child

Though the winter is long even richer
The harvest it brings
Though my waiting prolongs even greater
Your promise for me like a seed
I believe that my season will come

And when I finally see my tree
Still I believe there’s a season to come

Like a seed You were sown
For the sake of us all
From Bethlehem’s soil
Grew Calvary’s sequoia

 

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